Analysis Of The Article ' Girl By Jamaica Kincaid Essay

Analysis Of The Article ' Girl By Jamaica Kincaid Essay

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There are many expectations and roles for adolescents, especially daughters. Many young girls are taught from an early age how to act and what to do in order to fit into the small box that is being a mother, wife, or daughter. This box includes knowing how to make food for the family, clean up after others, and constantly being polite and respectable. When someone cannot or will not fit into the box, they are judged and looked down upon. Although women and children in the past have always had strict and specific duties in the home, today these expectations are unrealistic and unfair, and therefore these assumptions should be challenged.
Girl by Jamaica Kincaid is about the roles and expectations in society. The article is written as one long sentence separated with semicolons of a mother giving her daughter advice on how to be a good daughter and young woman. The article consists of statements about what women need to do, such as ways of making food for others, keeping a clean home and their behaviors and manners. The parts about cooking and cleaning are typical of the gender expectations for women to take care of the home and family. Many of the behaviors Kincaid writes about involve not being a "slut" and the way her daughter should be acting around men. She appears to care a lot about her daughter and the impression of her in society. Kincaid talks about how women should act in front of men they know versus men they do not know as well. This shows how Kincaid believes society expects validation from a man, preferably one who is the head of the household. The article gives motherly advice on how to be a woman and daughter and what to do in order to please everyone and fit into the roles accurately.
To be a good...


... middle of paper ...


...There is a thin line teenage girl are supposed to be walking but it is virtually impossible. There is also harsh stereotyping towards teenage boys Kincaid calls "wharf-rat boys." Likely being a "slut" or a "wharf-rat boy" means they are a in a lower class and seen as unworthy of talking to people not also considered a part of the same social status.
There is a vast amount of judgement given when young women do not fit into the certain categories. The final line in Girl says "you mean to say that after all you are really going to be the kind of woman who the baker wont let near the bread?" It is as if society looks down upon young women who do not know how to take care if the family.
In conclusion, expectations for women are set very high, and these expectations being introduced and enforced in adolescence can be a large source of stress for many young girls.

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